In a move that would surprise no-one, the World Anti-Doping Agency has decided that it will not exercise what it refers to as “its independent right of appeal” against the findings and actions of its affiliate, the US Anti-Doping Agency in the Lance Armstrong case, according to ABC News (Australia).
The report goes on to detail WADA president John Fahey speaking fawningly of the USADA report stating:
WADA has no such concerns as to the complete process and the overwhelming weight of evidence.
Rather it is of the opinion that the actions of USADA have highlighted the need in all cases for athletes to be able to come forward with evidence that will help rid sport of doping cheats.
The WADA move comes after the International Cycling Union (UCI) last month decided to uphold USADA’s findings and sanctions, and has extinguished any hope that Armstrong has that this whole thing will go away.
Short of appealing the UCI decision himself, that is.
The report concludes with:
It has taken a major effort and undertaking from a national anti-doping organisation to gather the compelling evidence following allegations raised by (Armstrong's former team-mate) Floyd Landis in 2010.
In a staggering coincidence, Armstrong gave up his fight against USADA on August 24th this year on the same day that Federal Prosecutors decided not to proceed with the charges against Landis.
Perhaps it’s not a coincidence, perhaps Armstrong realised at that point he didn’t stand a chance.
Perhaps it’s also not a coincidence that the Landis charges were put on hold when it became evident that USADA was about to destroy Armstrong—having the charges dropped is Landis’ thirty pieces of silver.
That must be the galling part for Armstrong—that his downfall came at the hands of a convicted doper and self-confessed fraudster.
Landis admitted defrauding the suckers who donated to his Floyd Fairness Fund in the wake of his positive doping test at the 2006 Tour de France according to the New York Daily News website, but charges were dropped when he agreed to pay back the money.
That report goes on to further detail the fact that Landis stands to profit from a “whistleblower lawsuit against Armstrong and his backers, alleging that Armstrong had defrauded the U.S. Postal Service to the tune of $60 million or more.”
While Armstrong’s lack of public comment suggests that he has accepted everything that has happened to him, public reaction has started to wonder off into the realm of the surreal.
The latest bizarre reaction is that Armstrong will be burned in effigy in England on Guy Fawkes Night according to CNN.com.
While that in itself seems like a ridiculous response to the Armstrong case, it gets worse with the Armstrong effigy linking him with disgraced—and dead—TV host Jimmy Savile, who is currently the subject of a massive child sex abuse investigation.
That’s pretty disgusting.
But it’s also an indication of the irrational responses to Armstrong’s doping. Like Tiger Wood’s infidelities, the public seems to take these things personally.
It’s very strange, but the one glimmer of hope is that Woods came out the other end and life goes on. I wonder if that will ever happen for Lance.